Rocky Mountain National Park officials recovered a body Friday morning that they believe to be a hiker who went missing late last year. Ryan Albert, 30, of New Jersey was reported overdue on Oct. 4, 2018, when he didn’t return from his hike on Long’s Peak and search efforts began the day after and continued through the season, despite a few suspensions due to weather.
On May 25, two climbing rangers were conducting a patrol of Long’s Peak when they discovered a glove of the same brand Albert was believed to have been wearing near a section of the mountain known as The Trough, according to a park spokesperson. This discovery prompted further exploration and on Thursday, four park climbing rangers ascended The Trough and, after several hours of searching, discovered what is believed to be Albert’s body under deep snow at an elevation of roughly 12,300 feet.
On Friday morning, a helicopter recovered the body following the on-scene investigation. The body was transferred to the Boulder County Coroner’s Office to confirm the identity and conduct an autopsy. More information will be released once the investigation is complete.
Albert was last seen by another park visitor at approximately 10:30 am on Oct. 4 in the area of Granite Pass, heading toward The Keyhole. A multi-day weather pattern of extreme fog, thunderstorms, snow showers, and freezing temperatures started on Oct. 4 and lasted through the search efforts. Search and rescue teams covered ground by foot, including higher elevation areas such as the Chasm Cirque and the Keyhole Route, as well as utilized aerial reconnaissance in their efforts.
Albert was one of at least three men to go missing on Long’s Peak over the winter. James Pruitt, 70, of Etowah, Tennessee, who was reported missing in February, and Micah Tice, 22, who was reported missing in November, have not been found.